Help with SEO Details

First, SEO does not care about your feelings

Today I’m here to help with SEO details. Now that I’ve had about a week of experience with SEO Yoast, I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s like a parent who has unreasonably high expectations. Please refer to Traffic, SEO, and Google’s Web Tools for my initial post on SEO.

I haven’t quite figured it all out yet but I know that it’s now taking me longer to get posts scheduled/published. What more could there be to do after writing the post? Well, I’ll tell you.

Not part of the SEO

The Featured Image

Sometimes I can find a photo to use, sometimes I have to fire up GIMP (it’s like free PhotoShop) and produce something that kinds of conveys what the post is related to and also doesn’t look like someone took a turd and smeared it all over the website. “Well, well, well privates! The mad shitter has struck again!” I do have some graphic design experience but what I don’t have is a lot of time to come up with original things that look great for every post. If this was a big blog with lots of writers and perhaps a graphic arts department then fine, I’d expect it. But, I’m just one guy, out here, alone on the range, producing some stuff and hoping it’s good.

Categories

After a post has been written and it’s ready to go, I determine how it’s categorized to help people who may want to see all the things that pertain to a specific topic. I generally group these by the type of passive income I’m discussing or if it’s not passive income related, then it could be writing, blogging, ranting, reviews of stuff that’s related, or as I intend to produce in the future, guides.

Tags

Similar to categories but more of them and they’re more off the cuff. These are sometimes even just words that I make up, like ubgrading and nymphographics. They could be just about anything I think of when I’m considering the article. Seriously, just try finding nymphographics and see what post it gets you. One of my favorite misunderstandings.

Excerpt

Right, like I need the stress of trying to pull some epiphany, or grand insight, or something I wrote that I just thought was kind of funny to stick in this little box. Sometimes I just try to come up with what the article’s generally about and replace some words to make it sounds a little more suggestive. But seriously, how does one make semi-dry passive income sound suggestive? Lube it up! I gently inserted my funds into my trading account. Reached back on the mouse and glided the subtle tip of the mouse pointer to the supple trade button and then rapidly clicked on it until it succumbed to my heart-thumping request. Buy! Yes! Buy! Hurry before the price goes up! I fall back into my chair and wipe my brow; my money is spent. Time for a nap.

Ok, perhaps I can make this subject a bit steamy. Unfortunately, the Excerpt box is too small and I just can’t force my oversized editorials into it.

SEO

This is where it gets difficult. It has a lot of things that I don’t fully understand, it gives me messages that I need to fix stuff but it doesn’t tell me where. It’s kind of like my mom like that. “Get me the Clorox!”
Ok, where is it?” “Open your eyes and look!” – great, thanks for that useful advice. I was so sure that my eyes were open until I was informed that that was the procedure for looking. Anyway, let’s proceed and keep in mind that I’m using the SEO Yoast plugin for WordPress.

Help with SEO Details – Snippet

SEO Title, Slug, and Meta Description

SEO Yoast Snippet preview

In theory I get it, this is what someone would see if they googled and found the article.

The SEO title is the first part, the Site is the second part (in blue)

Underneath is the URL and the slug in green, and below is the meta description which tells you what the article is supposed to be about.

I have mastered none of these. I actually come up with the witty, zany, suggestive, descriptive titles that I want and it generally forces me to make them make more sense. Fine.

Help with SEO Details – Readability Analysis

SEO Yoast Readability Analysis

It turns out that the one you see here isn’t that bad. I’ve had some that I have no idea how to fix. Transition words? Stuff it, SEO! It’s my style. I’m a perfectly capable writer and I’m choosing to deviate from the English I would be using if I was writing an article for a large publication or a formal essay.

It turns out that the one you see here isn’t that bad. I’ve had some that I have no idea how to fix. Transition words? Stuff it, SEO! It’s my style. I’m a perfectly capable writer and I’m choosing to deviate from the English I would be using if I was writing an article for a large publication or a formal essay.

However, I do try to appease the SEO readability analysis where I can. The Subheading distribution, I actually have subheads but since they haven’t been changed to the header style type it can’t identify them yet. I consider this postprocessing work. Once I get the subheads in the sad little readability guy will turn to a happy little green guy (like he’s about to throw up but still happy). It typically lets me off if the only issue is that I don’t use enough transition words.

Grammerly

I was going to save this until an upcoming post about new affiliates but this seems like the perfect place for it. I’m going to praise this product because I use it – and then override it when I want to make stylistic choices for my own voice.

These are my own words — If you’re a writer of any kind, this is the best grammar, spelling, plagiarism, voice checking helper you can have. I used it extensively throughout my last college level writing course and it was fantastic.

Correct all grammar errors with Grammarly!

I was just accepted into their affiliate program and I’m more than proud to promote it. It has a free browser plugin that you should get if you’re doing any writing at all. It spell checks, grammar checks, etc. but the real places that it comes in handy is when it checks your work for active/passive voice, checks you for unintentional plagiarism, and overall helps you become a better writer. Since I had grammarly integrated into MS Word (where I do all my drafting) my first drafts came out almost grammatically perfect so it saved me a lot of time that I used to work on the content.

Seriously, this is a shameless plug, but they totally deserve it for getting me through the class. In case you’re wondering, my grade was an A.

Back to the SEO nonsense.

Help with SEO Details – Focus Keyphrase

SEO Yoast Analysis Results

This is really the section that gets me because I don’t understand where some of these things are and how they relate but I’m sure that as I do it the meanings will start to click.

  • Internal linkslinks to my other posts.
  • Keyphrase length – I don’t know exactly where this is but SEO seems to want to make sure that the keyphrase is used as much as possible in the post. It also might have to agree with the title. Still a little fuzzy on this one.
  • Keyphrase density – It wants the keyphrase to be used a lot, which I apparently don’t do. I’ll likely try reducing the keyphrase length to be more succinct so I can raise the keyphrase density in the future.
  • Meta description length – beef it up to around 140 characters that are meaningful and it’ll turn green.
  • Slug stopwords – I had to look into this one, they’re essentially common words (e.g. a, the, in, on, etc.). Just remove them from the slug and it’ll turn green.
  • SEO title width – this is probably too long because the blog’s name is Passive Income Quest: Trial and Error. I may remove the Trial and Error portion to give it more room for the article title in the future.

Conclusion

It will take extra time to get the SEO done correctly but I do believe it helps. I also believe that the more you link to your other pages the higher you’re google pagerank will be (speculation).

If you’re using it and have advice for me, please feel free to share in the comments. If you’re new to using it and have questions, let me hear them and we’ll work through it together. It’s like being in class, if nobody raises their hand and asks a dumb question we all stay dumb.

Final SEO after fixes, before post.

Snippet
final analysis

Cheers.



Categories: Affiliate Marketing, Blogging, increasing traffic, SEO, writing

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